POSTED: 3:51 p.m. HST, Mar 2, 2013
LAST UPDATED: 7:13 a.m. HST, Mar 3, 2013
Rescuer crews have suspended their search for missing Kilauea, Kauai, man Scott Akina.
Personnel from the Kauai Fire Department, the Kauai Police Department, the Ocean Safety Bureau, the state Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement, and the Coast Guard had been searching for Akina, 55, since Tuesday night, after he reportedly went for a swim at Ninini Beach that afternoon and didn’t return.
“Our community join’s Scott Akina’s family and friends in mourning his loss, and our hearts and prayers are with them during this incredibly difficult time,” Mayor Bernard Carvalho said in a statement. “We also express our gratitude to rescuers from our local, state and federal agencies who have put forth their best effort this week in trying to locate him.”
According to Kauai police, the unified teams searched through hazardous conditions, including high surf and strong winds, with up to five vessels, four JetSkis, and two helicopters searching the sea and shoreline from Hanamaulu to Kalaheo.
Up to 20 police officers walked the coastline on foot from Ahukini Landing to the south end of the Nawiliwili Harbor.
With no sign of Akina’s body, the active search was called off at noon Saturday.
“Being able to recover a body following a drowning is always an important goal for our rescuers as we understand that while we cannot ease the pain of the family’s loss, it would at least provide them some closure,” Police Chief Darryl Perry said in a statement. “Unfortunately, we were not able to accomplish that goal this week. We will continue to respond to any reports of his body possibly being located.”
Akina was the eighth person to drown on Kauai this year.